When young baseball players are 12 and under, they will eat dirt if you tell them it will help them hit the ball. When they reach 13, it’s as if the “easy switch” turns on and they begin to look for the lazy way out of practice.

To be excellent at anything requires a conscientious effort to learn the best system to high competence.

This means at home or on the job. Most have heard that it takes at least 10,000 hours to develop a high proficiency in most any expertise.

You would think that a small business owner, a sales manager or a recruiter would want to be great at recruiting salespeople to avoid all the profit loss and negative effect of turnover and of hiring people who run customers off and destroy brands (Well Fargo). But, few do. They do not:

  • Understand how to network for talent among working sales reps in a full economy.
  • Learn a best practice recruiting system.
  • Screen people away before spending lots of time with them further down the recruiting funnel.
  • Know the skills and traits of high-activity sales professionals for which they recruit.
  • Understand how to design structured questions to focus on necessary personality traits.
  • Learn how to ask anchor questions and subsequent layered questions for the truth.
  • Pay attending to the general mental ability required for the complexity of the sales position.

But, worse than all of these – they do not first hire for character: conscientiousness and a concern for others – thus creating poor work cultures and insincere, untruthful and non-caring behaviors toward potential and current customers.

On the other hand, those who realize the complexity of a world class recruiting system, and the demands of prospecting for and selecting talent, train their people within a codified and proven system. Those responsible for recruiting salespeople become certified and accountable to their system as experts at:

  • Prospecting for talent
  • Screening out those who do not fit the job or culture
  • Using Scientific selection methods to determine if the candidate’s general mental ability, personality and character (conscientiousness) match up with requirements

When this happens, companies flourish. Companies enjoy top performing reps within a culture in which people love to work (provided leadership coaches well and also espouses the values they recruit)

I know you will not look for the easy and quick solution to anything as complex as selecting the right human being for a sales position. You know this will not lead to superior results.

Invest the time it takes to learn the processes, tools and skills for hiring great salespeople. Keep pressing for excellence and as you do this new sales reps will get off to a faster start, affect the rest of the culture in a positive way and stay employed with you as they become a catalyst for higher and consistent team performance.

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